View Full Version : I find the reality thrilling.


Trooper Keith
01-04-11, 01:49 AM
Life first formed billions of years ago from chains of amino acids coming together and then, through freak chance, beginning to propagate and transform other acids into themselves, to replicate, and to grow. From these humble beginning sprang life, and this life has evolved, becoming more and more complex. Billions of years of propagation and reproduction from the first amino acids has resulted in you! Before even this, stars exploded and formed planets, and at least one planet, Earth, has harbored this life. From water and dust life formed, and the matter that comprises you was once that of a burning celestial star. You are made of stars!

I find these thoughts reassuring, and they help me to cope with my psychiatric disorders. It's grounding and humbling to realize that we are made of stars, and that we are but a fleeting moment in a celestial eternity stretching for trillions and trillions of years. Someday, there will be nothingness, just as there was nothingness before a single point collapsed onto itself and exploded. And this nothingness, like the nothingness before it, will compress until it reaches a critical mass and explode into another Universe. An eternal progression of matter, of which you are less than an eyeblink.

Beyond that, look at how we have mastered our planet! Our diligent work and intelligence has brought us to a point where we control our environments and design our reality. Not in some Solipsist sense where we can "create our own realities" through beliefs, but in a very real sense - I would be very cold but for the fact that I can, at my command, heat my home. I can clothe myself. I am a master of my domain through virtue of my humanity, no longer subject to the elements but a master of them. In not very long, we will confirm the Standard Model, and be able to, as a species, say "we understand everything there is to know about the nature of matter." How bold! How wonderful, that we live in this generation where we can say "we have split the atom." In not very long at all, maybe a few hundred years, we will master the Higgs boson and be able to create matter from virtual nothingness.

As it stands, we have already created life in laboratory conditions. Life, from nothing! We can grow organs outside a body. We can replenish life with the use of Stem Cells. It won't be long before most diseases are completely eradicated as we streamline our ability to replace organs as necessary. Waitlists for organs to be harvested will no longer exist - we will be able to grow them in a vat, to necessary specifications. We are on the verge of being able to create life.

These great accomplishments that we as a species have achieved give me hope. They give me knowledge that I am, by virtue of my humanity, an inheritor of great accomplishments. And at the same time, how humble this must make me, as I recognize the great vastness of the Cosmos, and the sheer size of the Universe.

Still, this humility is checked by the virtue of the complexity of our brains. Despite having encountered vast starsystems and studying the physics of black holes, nothing is more complicated than the human brain. Infants form over 4 quadrillion synapses. These are then pruned, in the sake of efficiency, down to a "mere" 500 trillion connections in an adult. How vast this network, that outnumbers the stars in the sky! And no matter how it might malfunction, in the form of ADHD or bipolar disorder or whatever else, it is still a magnificent and beautiful device. Nothing, perhaps, is more glorious or beautiful or awe-inspiring than the human brain. And you, yes you, have one! Perhaps the most complex network in the universe rests gently upon your shoulders. Never forget that.

"Matter flows from place to place and momentarily comes together to be you. Some people find that thought disturbing; I find the reality thrilling." - Richard Dawkins

EshkaronsEngine
01-04-11, 02:09 AM
<a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zSgiXGELjbc">We and the universe R 1</a>

Trooper Keith
01-04-11, 02:13 AM
We're all part of a greater system than ourselves. (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vioZf4TjoUI&feature=autofb)

ginniebean
01-04-11, 02:15 AM
A very moving post keith. :)

Mignon
01-04-11, 02:17 AM
Life first formed billions of years ago from chains of amino acids coming together and then, through freak chance, beginning to propagate and transform other acids into themselves, to replicate, and to grow. From these humble beginning sprang life, and this life has evolved, becoming more and more complex. Billions of years of propagation and reproduction from the first amino acids has resulted in you! Before even this, stars exploded and formed planets, and at least one planet, Earth, has harbored this life. From water and dust life formed, and the matter that comprises you was once that of a burning celestial star. You are made of stars!

I find these thoughts reassuring, and they help me to cope with my psychiatric disorders. It's grounding and humbling to realize that we are made of stars, and that we are but a fleeting moment in a celestial eternity stretching for trillions and trillions of years. Someday, there will be nothingness, just as there was nothingness before a single point collapsed onto itself and exploded. And this nothingness, like the nothingness before it, will compress until it reaches a critical mass and explode into another Universe. An eternal progression of matter, of which you are less than an eyeblink.

Beyond that, look at how we have mastered our planet! Our diligent work and intelligence has brought us to a point where we control our environments and design our reality. Not in some Solipsist sense where we can "create our own realities" through beliefs, but in a very real sense - I would be very cold but for the fact that I can, at my command, heat my home. I can clothe myself. I am a master of my domain through virtue of my humanity, no longer subject to the elements but a master of them. In not very long, we will confirm the Standard Model, and be able to, as a species, say "we understand everything there is to know about the nature of matter." How bold! How wonderful, that we live in this generation where we can say "we have split the atom." In not very long at all, maybe a few hundred years, we will master the Higgs boson and be able to create matter from virtual nothingness.

As it stands, we have already created life in laboratory conditions. Life, from nothing! We can grow organs outside a body. We can replenish life with the use of Stem Cells. It won't be long before most diseases are completely eradicated as we streamline our ability to replace organs as necessary. Waitlists for organs to be harvested will no longer exist - we will be able to grow them in a vat, to necessary specifications. We are on the verge of being able to create life.

These great accomplishments that we as a species have achieved give me hope. They give me knowledge that I am, by virtue of my humanity, an inheritor of great accomplishments. And at the same time, how humble this must make me, as I recognize the great vastness of the Cosmos, and the sheer size of the Universe.

Still, this humility is checked by the virtue of the complexity of our brains. Despite having encountered vast starsystems and studying the physics of black holes, nothing is more complicated than the human brain. Infants form over 4 quadrillion synapses. These are then pruned, in the sake of efficiency, down to a "mere" 500 trillion connections in an adult. How vast this network, that outnumbers the stars in the sky! And no matter how it might malfunction, in the form of ADHD or bipolar disorder or whatever else, it is still a magnificent and beautiful device. Nothing, perhaps, is more glorious or beautiful or awe-inspiring than the human brain. And you, yes you, have one! Perhaps the most complex network in the universe rests gently upon your shoulders. Never forget that.

"Matter flows from place to place and momentarily comes together to be you. Some people find that thought disturbing; I find the reality thrilling." - Richard Dawkins


.....

redacted

Fortune
01-04-11, 02:21 AM
It is amazing to me that of all things, right now it looks like human consciousness is closer to being a "last frontier" (assuming anything could possibly be such a thing) than anything else that's been suggested.

Trooper Keith
01-04-11, 02:23 AM
It is amazing to me that of all things, right now it looks like human consciousness is closer to being a "last frontier" (assuming anything could possibly be such a thing) than anything else that's been suggested.

The beautiful thing is how close we're getting to understanding ourselves. Every day we come closer and closer to understanding this phenomenon of self-awareness. Neuroscience research is bearing out the structures that lead to the emergent properties of consciousness.

Fortune
01-04-11, 02:37 AM
Oh yeah, definitely. I mean it's definitely coming, and coming faster than anyone expects. Just what I've learned studying ADHD is incredible compared to what was known even 20 years ago.

Abi
01-04-11, 02:37 AM
And outstanding and inspiring post.

The comfort and reassurance I gain from knowing that I live in an era not governed by capricious superstition but objectivity and reason cannot be overemphasised.

As a person with ADHD and bipolar disorder, I feel great serenity to know that the accomplishments of physiology and psychology, rooted in the Renaissance, have taught us that I am not possessed by demons, nor a victim (or practitioner) of witchcraft, nor merely a morally degenerae individual.

Thanks to pharmacotherapy, I am able to manage, if not cure, the symptoms of my illnesses, and not be subjected to punishment or exorcism or being burnt at the stake or dying by my own hand, something I had contemplated on too many occasions to count prior to diagnosis and treatment.

Thanks to the philosophy of humanism, I can count on a growing trend towards society not perceiving me as "bad", "lazy", "useless" or "immoral", but rather suffering from disorders that are no fault of my own; and say goodbye to notions of "nobility in suffering" rooted in unenlightened belief systems from archaic eras.

cantakeitnemore
01-04-11, 02:38 AM
In our biology textbook in school, the first line in the chapter on nervous system was : "Human brain is the only thing in the world that is trying to study itself".
Isn't it admirable and frustrating at the same time how our "thinking" can influence things ? And how things can influence our thinking ? And how we can never be sure about anything?
Isn't human body as a whole an example of perfect engineering?
Look at translation(protein synthesis), yes there are abnormalities sometimes, but the way ribosomes, rnas work together to form protein is just amazing. And that kind of high level process goes on in body everyday, along with the other highly organised processes.
Our body is just as complex as the universe/space.
Maybe if we keep going inside we might find what's outside? Maybe its all just inside out ?

Amtram
01-04-11, 11:31 AM
My thoughts exactly, Keith. I'm blown away with wonder every time something new is discovered that supports or challenges what we know, and opens up even more avenues of discovery. Being a part of this amazing universe, even if it's a small and short-lived part, puts me completely in the present moment, enjoying it and soaking it in, more than anything else I've tried in my life.

SB_UK
01-04-11, 02:00 PM
~s (http://www.symphonyofscience.com/)~ And it's all really there. But you gotta stop and think about it. About the complexity - to really get the pleasure.

Can anybody think about a subject which they don't understand ?

How simple is it for the average intelligence to gain a sufficiently detailed overview/understanding of physics, neuroscience ... ... ... ?

Any overview/understanding would probably require an understanding of the tools (their limitations, the alternatives) which the physicist, neuroscientist use (also) ... ... ...

And what stands in peoples' way ?

Is there a relatively trivial solution to the problem which people face ?

From ~s (http://books.google.co.uk/books?id=GSE5qlwGzCAC&printsec=frontcover&dq=Matrix+philosophy&source=bl&ots=IjhSKzvrY0&sig=MWxf3Cwt1NAlN7Gk8ALsndIc3nE&hl=en&ei=DlgjTbPlEoW5hAfRlY23Dg&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=1&ved=0CB8Q6AEwAA#v=onepage&q&f=false)~ - chapters which appear to introduce Plato, Socrates, metaphysics, freedom, pluralism, nihilism
and my personal favourite title
"Popping a bitter pill: Existential authenticity in the Matrix and Nausea"
- to a (I'd guess for the most part) new (INTERESTED) audience.

~ps~ Haven't read the book - just going off the Chapter titles.

~*~

On an optimal method (because the standard educational system does not appear to work) for stimulating hunger in and then feeding (developing) the mind of an individual, towards putting the individual into a position where the individual can 'think about the complexity - towards permitting the individual - to really get the pleasure'.

In line with the movie 'The Matrix', the quote from Feynman above and from a recent post (http://www.addforums.com/forums/showpost.php?p=992683&postcount=46) by Ginnebean (Kierkegaard) -

"Truth can only be apprehended by the individual".

If a chappie doesn't know his neural actvity from his pleural cavity - then how can he be expected to have an appreciation of the mechanism underlying breathing - a mechanism which he's performing every few seconds, without ever even realising it -
- and never will, until he learns to.

Do people realise that they're superstructures of subatomic particles ?
That the quantum interface between structure and unstructure exists within the shape which we see, when we look in the mirror ?

Kunga Dorji
01-13-11, 05:29 AM
Life first formed billions of years ago from chains of amino acids coming together and then, through freak chance, beginning to propagate and transform other acids into themselves, to replicate, and to grow. From these humble beginning sprang life, and this life has evolved, becoming more and more complex. Billions of years of propagation and reproduction from the first amino acids has resulted in you! Before even this, stars exploded and formed planets, and at least one planet, Earth, has harbored this life. From water and dust life formed, and the matter that comprises you was once that of a burning celestial star. You are made of stars!

I find these thoughts reassuring, and they help me to cope with my psychiatric disorders. It's grounding and humbling to realize that we are made of stars, and that we are but a fleeting moment in a celestial eternity stretching for trillions and trillions of years. Someday, there will be nothingness, just as there was nothingness before a single point collapsed onto itself and exploded. And this nothingness, like the nothingness before it, will compress until it reaches a critical mass and explode into another Universe. An eternal progression of matter, of which you are less than an eyeblink.

Beyond that, look at how we have mastered our planet! Our diligent work and intelligence has brought us to a point where we control our environments and design our reality. Not in some Solipsist sense where we can "create our own realities" through beliefs, but in a very real sense - I would be very cold but for the fact that I can, at my command, heat my home. I can clothe myself. I am a master of my domain through virtue of my humanity, no longer subject to the elements but a master of them. In not very long, we will confirm the Standard Model, and be able to, as a species, say "we understand everything there is to know about the nature of matter." How bold! How wonderful, that we live in this generation where we can say "we have split the atom." In not very long at all, maybe a few hundred years, we will master the Higgs boson and be able to create matter from virtual nothingness.

As it stands, we have already created life in laboratory conditions. Life, from nothing! We can grow organs outside a body. We can replenish life with the use of Stem Cells. It won't be long before most diseases are completely eradicated as we streamline our ability to replace organs as necessary. Waitlists for organs to be harvested will no longer exist - we will be able to grow them in a vat, to necessary specifications. We are on the verge of being able to create life.

These great accomplishments that we as a species have achieved give me hope. They give me knowledge that I am, by virtue of my humanity, an inheritor of great accomplishments. And at the same time, how humble this must make me, as I recognize the great vastness of the Cosmos, and the sheer size of the Universe.

Still, this humility is checked by the virtue of the complexity of our brains. Despite having encountered vast starsystems and studying the physics of black holes, nothing is more complicated than the human brain. Infants form over 4 quadrillion synapses. These are then pruned, in the sake of efficiency, down to a "mere" 500 trillion connections in an adult. How vast this network, that outnumbers the stars in the sky! And no matter how it might malfunction, in the form of ADHD or bipolar disorder or whatever else, it is still a magnificent and beautiful device. Nothing, perhaps, is more glorious or beautiful or awe-inspiring than the human brain. And you, yes you, have one! Perhaps the most complex network in the universe rests gently upon your shoulders. Never forget that.

"Matter flows from place to place and momentarily comes together to be you. Some people find that thought disturbing; I find the reality thrilling." - Richard Dawkins

That is of course one hypothesis.
I wouldn't be too sure that we have mastered the planet though:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kYUpkPTcqPY
This appeared in 6 minutes.
There are still 60 people unaccounted for 2 days later.

We are told that the sea surface temperatures around northern Australia are so warm it is without precedent.

This is worth looking at too:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-Q1oDmANIXc

The price of hubris is very high.

meadd823
01-13-11, 05:38 AM
KMiller is allowed his form of meditation and spirituality in the same supportive environment as any other belief system expressed here in this section - I write this just in case any one who stumbles upon this thread has a notion to debate the issue = this is not the place.

Kunga Dorji
01-13-11, 05:46 AM
~s (http://www.symphonyofscience.com/)~

Can anybody think about a subject which they don't understand ?

How simple is it for the average intelligence to gain a sufficiently detailed overview/understanding of physics, neuroscience ... ... ... ?

Any overview/understanding would probably require an understanding of the tools (their limitations, the alternatives) which the physicist, neuroscientist use (also) ... ... ...

And what stands in peoples' way ?



Very often it is the ideas that we hold too dear to tolerate their being questioned.